With more than 170 million monthly active users on Twitter, it can be overwhelming to digest the constant stream of messages that flow through the Twittersphere.In an experiment, entrepreneur Adam Brault decided to quit Twitter for one month.
He was pleased with the results.
Brault said that during his first evening off Twitter, he felt a sense of peace that he hadn’t felt in quite some time.
Brault notes that Twitter is great for meeting new people, learning about what they like, and building on existing relationships. But he says that subjecting himself to thousands of ads and tweets throughout the day takes a huge mental toll on him.
“Mentally, we just aren’t capable of simultaneously empathizing with hundreds of people—let alone thousands or millions,” Brault writes. “The result is we either build up a calloused, jaded, or cynical defence against empathy or find a way to block out more.”
Brault admits that during his one-month Twitter hiatus, he cracked and logged in to his secondary account where he only follows 20 people. He says that he felt depressed within minutes.
Ultimately, there’s just simply too much noise on Twitter that ends up being a huge distraction. Brault eventually realised that what he values the most is uninterrupted thought.
“I’ve realised how Twitter has made me break up my thoughts into tiny, incomplete, pieces—lots of hanging ideas, lots of incomplete relationships, punctuated by all manner of hanging threads and half-forked paths,” Brault writes. “[…] But I’ve found that my greatest joy, deepest peace, and most valuable contributions come from intentionally choosing where to let my focus rest.”
Brault says that he’s not going to quit Twitter for good, but as a result of the experiment, he is choosing to “put more uninterrupted thought into things one relationship, one idea, one piece of writing at a time.”
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